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Selected Writings

Oliver Goldsmith

Edited by John Lucas

Cover Picture of Selected Writings
Categories: 18th Century, Irish
Imprint: FyfieldBooks
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Available as:
Paperback (180 pages)
(Pub. Apr 2003)
Out of Stock
  • Description
  • Excerpt
  • Editor
  • Contents
  • Whence and what art thou, visionary birth?
    Nature disowns and reason scorns thy mirth;
    In thy black aspect every passion sleeps,
    The joy that dimples and the woe that weeps.
    How hast thou filled the scene with all thy brood,
    Of fools pursuing, and of fools pursued!
        (from 'Epilogue, spoken by Mr Lee Lewes in the character of Harlequin')

    Oliver Goldsmith (1728-1774), essayist, reviewer, dramatist, novelist, librettist and poet, became one of the most popular authors in that 'age of authors', especially for The Vicar of Wakefield. In this selection of his poetry and prose, John Lucas reconsiders Thackeray's praise of Goldsmith as 'the most beloved of English writers', and reveals him as a more radical, formidable - and Irish - figure than the phrase suggests.

    Goldsmith's 'wit, civility of tone and adroit handling of form' express, Lucas argues, the author's intelligence, integrity and concern for a society that he saw disintegrating into competing interests. The introduction, detailed notes and afterword on the contemporary context present a Goldsmith whose moral seriousness is as necessary to twenty-first century society as it was to his own.
    Table of Contents

    Introduction - John Lucas

    A Note on the Texts - John Lucas


    A Prologue

    On a Beautiful Youth Struck Blind by Lightning

    The Gift

    A Sonnet

    An Elegy on the Glory of Her Sex, Mrs Mary Blaize

    The Double Transformation

    Description of an Author's Bed-Chamber

    On Seeing Mrs*** Perform in the Character of

    On the Death of the Right Honourable

    An Elegy on the Death of a Mad Dog

    Stanzas on Woman

    Edwin and Angelina


    The Traveller
    A New Simile

    Verses in Reply to an Invitation

    Epitaph on Edward Purdon

    Epilogue to The Good-Natured Man
    Epilogue to The Sister
    The Deserted Village
    Epitaph on Dr Parnell

    The Haunch of Venison

    Prologue to Zobenide

    Epilogue to She Stoops to Conquer
    Epilogue spoken by Mr Lee Lewes

    [On Ovid's Epistles

    From An Enquiry into the Present State of Polite Learning in Europe
    From The Bee
    From The Citizen of the World
    The Revolution in Low Life

    From An History of the Earth and Animated Nature
    To Mrs Banbury

    Afterword: Goldsmith and Politics - John Lucas

    Notes - John Lucas

    John Lucas
    ... read more
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